The Herald of Everett, Washington
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Published: Sunday, January 20, 2013, 12:01 a.m.

There's no way Mom can ever be as cool as Auntie

My much younger sister came to visit this week from San Francisco. I started mixing up her name and my daughter's name almost immediately.

"Mommy!" my daughter would say. "I'm not Auntie!"

I would catch myself saying the wrong name, but be incapable of stopping myself. The more tired I got, the worse the problem became.

If I had a newborn, I could blame this memory lapse on mommy-brain. But my daughter is 3 years old. Plus, I've known my sister for her entire life. I really should know her name by now.

"At least you don't have a dog," my sister said. "I don't let anybody call me Rover."

My daughter finally settled things by asking to be called "Pinkie Sparkles" for the duration of her aunt's visit. That turned out to be really helpful. For some reason, it was easier to remember Pinkie Sparkles then the name I actually gave my daughter after nine months of pregnancy and 12 hours of labor.

Pinkie named herself after the sparkly pink caboodle my sister bought her at Target. My daughter is using this box to house her My Little Pony collection.

But according to some guys my sister knows in San Francisco, strippers use that same type of box to collect money before they leave the stage! Auntie didn't know about this until after her purchase. Now we're all thinking Pinkie Sparkles isn't such a sweet name after all.

Having my life as a stay-at-home mom in Snohomish County compared to my sister's single life in San Francisco makes me feel about as boring as you can get. I never get to hang out with friends and eat pizza, but I occasionally run into people I know at Fred Meyer.

I've never broken up a fist fight between an angry lesbian couple, but I have stopped a toddler from throwing sand at the park.

I've never been mugged or stabbed in the back by a shard of glass, but I have tripped over some junk in my garage and cut myself on a cardboard box.

See what I mean? By comparison, I'm boring with a capital B.

My sister is on her way home to her exciting life right now. Her ticket to SFO is in coach, but she gets to sit there all by herself with her fancy new iPad. Nobody's rummaging through her purse for gum, and nobody's asking her to go potty right when the fasten-your-seat-belt light comes on.

Later this week, my sister might swing by the spa for a massage. As for me, the kids and I are planning on going to the pool in Lynnwood. The family Jacuzzi is kind of like a spa, only some people are wearing swim diapers.

At least my nomenclature problems have disappeared. I can finally drop this Pinkie Sparkles business and start remembering my daughter's proper name. But maybe I'll talk to my husband about getting a dog, or perhaps some chickens. Life seems a little bit less exciting around here now that Auntie Sparkles is gone.

Jennifer Bardsley is an Edmonds mom of two and blogs at http://teachingmybabytoread.blog.com.

Story tags » Parenting

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